Keeping in touch with your customers, prospects and associates on a regular basis is so important. A regular enews can be a great softer sales tool, without bombarding your recipients to buy from you. The aim is to be front of mind when they think they need a product or service from you.

Sending out a regular enews is great value and is a great reminder for existing, bought once and potential new customers. It can also work well as part of a fully integrated targeted marketing campaign.

If you're thinking of communicating with your customers and prospects with an enews, there are a number of questions you need to ask before you start...

Which email system will you use?

There are lots out there with Mailchimp being a favourite for many, as it is free for lists of up to 2,000 subscribers, so ideal for new starters. More than 3 million people use MailChimp to create, send, and track email newsletters.

Who is going to write the content?

Are you going to write all the content? If you decide to send a weekly, that's a lot of content writing which can be very time consuming and maybe your subscribers might get a bit bored if it's all about you. If you're a copywriter then, that's great, but for many of us it's good to ask clients, suppliers, possible new customers to guest blog for you.

How often do you send?

You can send as often as you like. It all depends on who your subscribers are. Do they like a weekly or monthly enews? Maybe they prefer emails on a Friday. It's always good to ask when people are signing up. Maybe give them the option of weekly or monthly when they subscribe. You should even give the option to change from weekly to monthly (rather than risk losing them).

How are you going to add subscribers?

Are you going to have a subscribe on your website? If you're selling to consumers you need to get them to subscribe, but if you're selling to other businesses you don't have to. But imagine sending an enews to someone you'd met at a networking event without asking them first. Be courteous and ask them in advance on the phone or email.

How does your subscriber like to be contacted?

Maybe your subscriber signs up to your monthly email, but then after a few months unsubscribes. Don't be disheartened - this might not be anything personal (some may give a reason). It's more than likely that it's because they're getting too many emails. Perhaps they'd prefer you call them every month as they're out and about all the time – this might be a good reason to get in touch. It might be better to ask them when you first meet them/start working with them how they prefer to be contacted. After all, everyone is different so one size doesn't fit all.

Article by Vicki Stone of Vicki Stone Marketing.

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